Publication type: Article in scientific journal
Type of review: Peer review (publication)
Title: Flow revisited : process conceptualization and a novel application to service contexts
Authors: Drengner, Jan
Jahn, Steffen
Furchheim, Pia
DOI: 10.1108/JOSM-12-2016-0318
Published in: Journal of Service Management
Volume(Issue): 29
Issue: 4
Pages: 703
Pages to: 734
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher / Ed. Institution: Emerald
ISSN: 1757-5818
Language: English
Subjects: Service quality; Flow; Loyalty; Experience
Subject (DDC): 658.8: Marketing management
Abstract: Purpose: Flow is an important yet under-utilized concept to examine extraordinary experiences in service encounters. An extensive review of extant literature revealed several conceptual concerns that have contributed to a blurred understanding of flow. The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptualization of flow that is complete yet parsimonious. Design/methodology/approach: The paper includes a survey (Study 1, N=202) that covers gaming and online services and a field study (Study 2, N=448) covering a festival context. Structural equation modeling and regression-based mediation analysis are used to analyze the data. Findings Flow can meaningfully be conceptualized as the process from engrossment to enjoyment. Engrossment comprises loss of self-consciousness, transformation of time, concentration on the task at hand, and action-awareness merging. In service encounters with high achievement content (e.g. gaming or sports), challenge-skill balance, clear goals, unambiguous and immediate feedback, and sense of control serve as antecedents of engrossment. Yet flow also appears in service contexts without achievement content (i.e. where consumers have less control over the outcomes of their performance, such as when listening to music). Across service contexts, the enjoyment and engrossment (directly or indirectly) impact service loyalty. Practical implications: In terms of improving loyalty or training outcomes service providers should have a clear interest in providing the utmost potential for creating flow experiences during the service encounter. Hedonic offers that allow engrossing in the activity seem particularly effective in this regard. Originality/value: This paper offers a clear theoretical and empirical distinction of formerly treated facets of flow. It further contributes to extant literature by providing a revised conceptualization that regards flow as the process from engrossment to enjoyment. The revised conceptualization is void of unnecessary dimensions and can be applied and compared across various research contexts, including hedonic, nonachievement services. Moreover, the paper indicates that research streams on flow and immersion might be linked more closely.
URI: https://digitalcollection.zhaw.ch/handle/11475/10350
Fulltext version: Published version
License (according to publishing contract): Licence according to publishing contract
Departement: School of Management and Law
Organisational Unit: Institute of Marketing Management (IMM)
Appears in collections:Publikationen School of Management and Law

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